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  1. #1
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    Huge Capacity Windows 2003 Server

    I have a request to built a standard 32 bit Windows 2003 server as big as possible using standard parts. I am thinking if i use 750GB x 4 Raid 5, that will give me 2.1TB of usable space. Is there any limitations or bottlenecks I should be wary about?

  2. #2
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    Depends on what you are using it for...

  3. #3
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    Is there a limitation in how many drives you can have ? Or the kind of raid you can have on the system ? If you're just wanting a lot of disk space, you would rather do raid 0 to get all the data spread across the system - but no redundancy. With raid 5 you prolly get more of a compromise between space and amount of redundancy.

    Limits on the filesystem size from memory is over 12TB - so you should be safe. But I think the cluster size factors prominently in how big the volumes can be.
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  4. #4
    If you are using this for anything other than a file server, I recommend shying away from RAID-5. It also looks like those are SATA drives. If this is a virtual or DB environment, that's probably not a good idea. Your IO wait times will be off the charts with RAID-5 and SATA drives.

  5. #5
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    Will Raid 6 fair better under such circumstances? I myself don't recommend SATA under such situation but client's budget makes it impossible to build with SaS

    Quote Originally Posted by sly596 View Post
    If you are using this for anything other than a file server, I recommend shying away from RAID-5. It also looks like those are SATA drives. If this is a virtual or DB environment, that's probably not a good idea. Your IO wait times will be off the charts with RAID-5 and SATA drives.

  6. #6
    RAID-6 still suffers from slower write speeds. If you can spare a little extra space, go with RAID-10.

    If you don't mind me asking, what's the budget on this server?

  7. #7
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    What is the server for? It's impossible to say without knowing, but anything with high I/O should not be on a RAID5 volume. RAID6 won't really make a difference it's just RAID5 with double parity.

    Sometimes it's better to tell a client that what they're trying to do won't work properly with their budget, rather than build a half assed machine that's going to choke. I would much rather turn a client away than spend hours of my time trying to get crappy infrastructure to perform better when it physically can't.

    Dan

  8. Quote Originally Posted by boonchuan View Post
    Will Raid 6 fair better under such circumstances? I myself don't recommend SATA under such situation but client's budget makes it impossible to build with SaS
    with 4x 750G's, RAID6 yields the same capacity with RAID10. thus, you rather use RAID10.

    if your client allows ~US$300 more, you ought to consider 8x 500G RAID10 (~2TB capacity) which will perform much better than 4x 750G, regardless RAID5/6/10.

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